Why do immigrants require quality ESL classes?
ESL classes help all immigrants improve their English.
As English is the main language of this society, it will be most
beneficial to both themselves and society if immigrants have a
level of English that gives them full access to society. Language
learning for immigrants for whom English is not a first language is
not the same as literacy learning for those for whom English is a
first language. Immigrants require ESL
ESL classes help immigrants to find work
Every country has different practices related to finding work..
Different countries and language backgrounds have different styles
of written applications and interviews have different functions. In
ESL classes students can learn what will be required of them when
they apply for jobs in Australia. Knowing the expectations of
employers will ease the difficult task of finding employment.
ESL classes help students cope with native speakers.
Coping with native speakers is quite difficult. In ESL classes
students have the opportunity to gain familiarity with native
speaker speech and the strategies for coping with it. This will be
crucial if immigrants are to integrate easily into society or the
workplace. Both established and new residents will feel more
comfortable and avoid misunderstandings and tension if there is
good communication between them.
ESL classes teach about the opportunities, rights and
responsibilities of living in Australia.
Each country has very specific laws, routines and customs. ESL
classes fulfill a very important role in alerting immigrants to the
specifics of Australian society in the role of the police,
harassment laws and workplace practices. These concepts take much
longer to become clear without guidance and instruction. ESL
classes are a proactive measure to ensure that immigrants
understand their rights and responsibilities.
ESL classes provide an environment to teach about racial
tolerance and multiculturalism.
Some immigrants come from countries which are largely homogeneous,
or where there is not much political tolerance of difference. For
some immigrants the cultural diversity of Australia is surprising.
ESL classes provide a forum where issues around tolerance and
harmony can be faced and addressed.
ESL classes provide immigrants with a chance to heal.
Moving to a new country is not an easy thing under any
circumstances. Immigrants may have come to Australia under
particularly distressing circumstances and have very real human
emotions with which to deal. In the safe environment of an ESL
class, teachers and counsellors can assist in the healing process
calling in outside bodies where necessary. This is beneficial for
Australia as prob1ems identified early help people to settle, avoid
social misconduct and contribute to the community.
ESL classes contribute to the alleviation of poverty
Excluding immigrants from ESL classes increases their vulnerability
to unemployment and living in poverty. Not only are the adults at
risk but so are their children. Poverty amongst immigrants will add
to the strain on society already dealing with a significant
proportion of its citizens in poverty. Providing English classes to
increase the likelihood of immigrants gaining employment is a
simple and cost effective solution to the problem.
ESL classes contribute to the growth of the economy
ESL classes will ultimately assist immigrants' ability to find
work, to have an income to buy goods and services, to pay taxes and
to live cohesively within the community. Without ESL classes this
may not occur The benefit to the Government for funding ESL classes
will far outweigh the costs.
ESL classes contribute to the alleviation of unemployment
With support for ESL classes, more teachers can be employed, the
very teachers who have lost their jobs due to the freeze on refugee
applications. This provides an opportunity for the Federal
Government to contribute to the alleviation of unemployment.
ESL classes demonstrate support for multiculturalism
Support for immigrants, who also happen to be of cultural
backgrounds other than Anglo-Celtic, offers the Federal Government
the opportunity to show in action that it has completely divorced
itself from One Nation-like policies.
ESL classes demonstrate human rights in action
Australia has grown as a nation since the White Australia Policy.
It has understood, been signatory to and is proud of its promotion
of Human Rights. It has legislated equal rights and
anti-discrimination laws. Denying ESL classes to immigrants is
denying them access to society. This is not consistent with
Australia's stance on Human Rights. Providing ESL classes
demonstrates that Australia values human rights.
ESL classes demonstrate support for social cohesion
The Australian government can take this opportunity to make a
strong statement about equality of opportunity and social cohesion
and to unite the community. It can provide a model of compassion,
showing that providing for all people is valued, leading the way
for other business groups in the community to contribute to
ESL classes demonstrate leadership and management
Leaving the states to meet the need for ESL classes risks unequal
treatment between states and regions. Federal budgeting for ESL
classes shows leadership in building social cohesion and good